Lost works of Czóbel
2019. 04. 06 – 2020. 04. 12.
It seems an impossible task to lay bare the entirety of Czóbel’s rich oeuvre. All we know about the output of an exceptionally long career, which spanned almost the entirety of the 20th century, should be considered – with a slight exaggeration – just the tip of the iceberg. It is to be assumed that the artist made at least as many more paintings and graphic works as we know today. What is especially regrettable is that the most outstanding works of Czóbel’s career are missing: we are aware of major works from his most important periods whose current whereabouts are unknown. The complete output of years has disappeared from sight, and there are periods which are almost completely blank spots for research; it is certain that whatever resurfaces of these works will also have a decisive influence on the international recognition of Czóbel’s oeuvre.
During several phases of his career, Czóbel was in the vanguard of modernist movements, and the works he made in Paris and Berlin were particularly likely to be decimated by the cruelty of 20th-century history.
Some of his latent works we know only from descriptions, recollections, interviews, contemporary reviews, letters or exhibition catalogues, though there are also a number of archival photos, which are the most useful for the art historian.
With a selection of black-and-white reproductions and other archival photos from the first half of Czóbel’s career, up to 1925, this exhibition hopes to give a modest overview of what important works have disappeared from the oeuvre almost without a trace.
In most cases we are in the dark about the dimensions of a work, which can only be approximated by the enlargements. We know the original dimensions of five works in total, where we did provide the figures.
This exhibition and the related media campaign is hoped to draw more attention to the lost works, some of which may be recovered. Every painting, whether we have been aware of it or not, adds considerably to our knowledge of the oeuvre, and helps us to present it in more detail.
We are grateful for any piece of information, which you can send us through the official channels of Ferenczy Museum Centre, or directly to the curator of the exhibition, Gergely Barki (email@example.com).